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Survey indicates vulnerability

Majority of US small businesses are unprepared for cyberattack

CNBC and SurveyMonkey recently released information from their Small Business Index Survey for the second quarter of 2022. It found that eight in ten business owners expect a recession to occur this year and that inflation continues to be a top concern. 


Another finding is that, despite the potential cybersecurity threats from Russia, businesses are no more concerned about cybersecurity than they were previously. 


CNBC reports that the country might attempt to launch a digital sabotage campaign against the United States. “Russia could use [a cyberattack] to try to draw the U.S. into a direct conflict.” They lamented that many small business owners remain unconcerned and unable to defend themselves if such an attack were to occur.


The graph below illustrates how businesses are concerned about cybersecurity compared to other issues, such as supply chain disruptions, inflation, COVID-19 and the labor shortage. (It illustrates a significant drop in COVID concern, however.) As for cybersecurity, only five percent of small business owners reported it to be the current biggest risk to their business. 

Image via CNBC

The number of business owners reporting cybersecurity as their top risk has remained relatively unchanged for several quarters, while inflation concerns have increased significantly. The timing of this particular survey is noteworthy, however, as it is the first to reflect opinions since the Russian invasion of Ukraine. 

Most businesses aren’t particularly worried about this threat, with 38 percent saying they’re “not so concerned” and another 23 percent saying they’re “not concerned at all”. Only nine percent said they’re “very concerned”. 


How concerned are you that your business will be the victim of a cyberattack within the next 12 months?

Image via SurveyMonkey\

While the majority of U.S. small businesses polled believe they would be able to quickly resolve a cyberattack, a significant 36 percent are “not confident” that they could do so. Even though most expressed confidence in their ability to resolve one, only a quarter said they are “very confident”. 


How confident are you in your ability to quickly resolve a cyberattack on your business?

Image via SurveyMonkey

Only 34 percent said that, in the event of a ransomware or another cyberattack, their business has a set plan it would follow to respond. Another 13 percent said that while they don’t currently have a plan, they do have one in development. Forty-one percent simply said that they don’t have a plan. Eleven percent weren’t even sure. 

Nearly half of businesses polled have installed antivirus or malware software and strengthened passwords and/or backed up files on external hard drives. Only 15 percent have taken any cybersecurity training.

Businesses today face pressing challenges like inflation, supply chain disruption and worker shortages; unfortunately, it’s also timely to add cybersecurity preparedness to business operations priorities.


About This Author


Ross Bentzler

Ross Bentzler is Executive VP and Information Security Officer for Alpine Bank. Ross has worked in the information technology field for two decades, focusing on information security for 13 years.

More about Ross Bentzler

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